Climb The Matterhorn – Sept 2020
August 30 - September 5
A long, tough and brilliant summit day – alpine mountaineering on the world’s most iconic mountain.
This is…The Matterhorn…
There can be few alpine climbers (or even armchair climbers!) who have not dreamed of scaling this strikingly beautiful peak. The classic route starts from the picture postcard Swiss alpine village of Zermatt and ascends the long and sustained (but not as steep as it looks!) ‘Hornli Ridge’. We spend 3 days preparing for the ascent in the equally famous alpine resort of Chamonix before moving east to Switzerland for the climb itself. We hope you can get in touch with plenty of time to plan, train and prepare for a safe & stylish ascent with us…
Our six day Matterhorn course begins in Chamonix which is easily reached from Geneva airport via a simple one hour transfer.
Climb the Matterhorn Aims
- Climb the Matterhorn, the worlds most iconic mountain
- Complete 3 high quality alpine training climbs based in the Chamonnix Valley. These will include rock, snow and mixed terrain to best prepare you for the styles of climbing on the Matterhorn
- Complete another classic alpine climb over Zermatt or Chamonix IF weather and energy levels allow.
- Spend an enjoyable week in the high Alps and a sociable time during the 3 nights spent in mountain huts / hotels.
6 Day Matterhorn Itinerary
This itinerary includes our tough 3 day Matterhorn Training course in Chamonix, with a 1:2 guiding ratio, then has a rest day, before heading to Zermatt for the summit climb with a 1:1 guiding ratio.
Pre-Course fitness training and, if you have the time, training and acclimatisation training in the hills above Chamonix for a few days before the course starts. We can offer advice on how to get the most out of these pre-course elements as well as discussing appropriate equipment for the trip.
Days 1-3: Three quality training and acclimatisation days around the Mont Blanc Range & based in the Chamonix Valley. This course follows the stated programme above, but we can also arrange less rock climbing orientated programmes for folk without a technical rock background. Either way, the exact climbs will be decided close to the time according to weather & conditions and based on your experience and aspirations. These climbs will include steep rock, ice and snow in ascent & descent to prepare for the terrain on the Matterhorn. Examples are the Aiguille du Peigne (3009m) in the Chamonix Aiguilles, Traverse of Les Perrons above Vallorcine, Traverse of the Petite Charmoz, Left Edge Route on Mont Blanc du Tacul, The Dent du Geant and many other Chamonix classics. Check our Chamonix Mountaineering Gallery for more information.
We usually spend one night of this 3 day training period in a mountain hut to facilitate your acclimatisation for climbing high on the Matterhorn. This will give you a sleeping height of around 3000m+ in preparation for the night at 3260m in the Hörnli Hut.
Day 4-6: The Ascent of the Matterhorn. A deliberately leisurely day allows you to relax and let the training and acclimatisation soak in. After driving to Tasch we take the train to Zermatt, lift to Schwarzsee and an easy 2 hour walk to the hut. The Guide will often go and do an afternoon recce on the first part of the climb which is done in the dark next morning. Here you can relax and enjoy the magnificent position of the hut at the base of the Hornli Ridge. Breakfast is usually taken at 0400 and then a long but brilliant day of constant scrambling begins. We aim to climb and descend the mountain and are normally back to the Hornli Hut for lunch – Rösti is traditional!
Our preferred course plan then is descend to Schwarzsee for a night in the famous Hotel there. This offers a superb post climb ambiance and takes the time pressure of the descent as the last lift back to Zermatt is not required. This also gives us a potential spare summit day, for very fit guests, to climb on the last day of the course. There is also the option to climb the Breithorn on the last day of the course although most of our guests are happy to have a relaxing evening and morning after the ascent of the Matterhorn!
If folk prefer, it is also easily possible to make the summit climb and descent to Zermatt that day and return to Chamonix. This is a slightly cheaper option generally as it does not require a mountain hotel night for guest & guide to be paid for. Then an easier alpine or rock climbing day can be enjoyed in Chamonix.
Matterhorn Climber Experience & Fitness Pre-Requirements
An ascent of the Matterhorn by any route will be a long and tough day and you should be prepared for 7-10 hours of sustained mountaineering. High levels of fitness and stamina are required as well as head for heights and decent movement skills on scrambling and easy climbing ground. Accurate & sound cramponing skills are also required for both the snowy / icy / mixed ground encountered on the rocks and summit snow and ice field. Folk preparing for this ascent should aim to spend lots of time in advance scrambling and easy rock climbing with a rucksack and mountain boots. We would be delighted to offer some guidance on suitable training peaks and routes and indeed have a suggested progression for UK based & alpine Matterhorn preparation courses.
On this course specifically a rock climbing background is also required for the technical high alpine rock on day 2 thus guests need to be able to second F6a comfortably and have some good abseiling experience.
2020 Price – £2795.00
Maximum Ratio of 1 Guide To 2 Guests for the 3 day training period and 1:1 guiding for the 3 day summit period
Please see our full Climb The Matterhorn Page for more details including what this guiding fee includes and does not include.